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New helo trainer at Rucker?

ChuckMK23

Former H-46 Driver
pilot
That's not a UH-72 (EC-145). That's its predecessor, the EC-135, right? Or did they go back to a fenestron on the T2 edition?

The UH-72A is a standard tail rotor.
Because Airbus is pitching the EC135 (now H135) to the Navy as TH-57 replacement and not the UH-72/H145
 

Gatordev

Well-Known Member
pilot
Site Admin
Contributor
Some thoughts, for what they're worth...

Let's forget about the dual-engine/cost argument (which i think is important and very valid). Since Airbus is trying to sell the H135, it's important to remember that the 135 =/= the -145/-72. Spending some time with people who know, the 135 is significantly less expensive to maintain than the 145. Here's some pros I've noted about the 135:

- Generally very easy to fly once you get the feel.
- The autopilot is lightyears ahead of the fleet systems in capability (but more on that in the cons).
- Tons of power during OEI (and the P3 is supposed to be even more of a monster).

Some cons:

- The autopilot is lightyears ahead of the fleet systems, so studs will be moving on to a very different system. Also, the autopilot isn't a 4-axis system (or at least it's not on the older ones), so some relearning of how to apply power will be needed and some relearning of how not to use the pedals will be needed, at least if going to the -60.
- Autos: I'm not sure if this is a con or not. Naval Aviation needs to figure out how much of a priority this is given 2 engines and the relatively low chance of having a T/R failure in the fleet. It doesn't auto that great, but it hasn't needed to.
- Nav system: Airbus is apparently moving everything to Avidyne glass panels. I hear it's a pain in the ass. Then again, so is the LM software in the -60.

Regarding the MMI...I've seen studs put the rotor disc in the oddest of places in the -60, so I suppose it could be an issue, but you also move the disc a lot more in the -60. It seems like if you build the discipline in at the beginning of the HTs, the MMI isn't quite the big deal that I thought it was. But I also have at least a small clue of what I'm doing, so never underestimate what a stud can manage to pull off.
 

ChuckMK23

Former H-46 Driver
pilot
@ 60 gallons / hour its got a pretty similar endurance profile to the TH-57 - and a lot faster in cruise. The EMS folks I know who fly it love it. Agree on the MMI not being a huge "thing" - you fly the aircraft mostly in trim anyways and manage trim with a coolie hat vs a big trim release button.
 

Gatordev

Well-Known Member
pilot
Site Admin
Contributor
That's not really where MMI comes into play. It's more on landings and even more so on sloped landings. It can start accelerating towards the limit pretty quick.

One more thing I forgot to add in the cons:

- Tail height: There's about negative 2 millimeters of clearance between the tail bumper and the ground on a running landing, and one bump pretty much jacks up the bumper.
 

ChuckMK23

Former H-46 Driver
pilot
That's not really where MMI comes into play. It's more on landings and even more so on sloped landings. It can start accelerating towards the limit pretty quick.
Oh now that you mention it I remember how much of a PITA it was on sloped landings on the BO-105 and BK-117. I forgot all about that.
 

HokiePilot

Well-Known Member
pilot
Contributor
My takeaways:
A tail rotor. That's an odd requirement. I understand no NOTAR system, but I don't see a problem with a Fenstrom like the Dolphin.
Landing skids. I would not write that as a requirement, but its going to be that.
A Hoist!!!!!!!! That's a new requirement. I really have trouble seeing the value of training here vs the RAG. I would love to understand the justification for this.
Sliding passenger door. That goes along with the hoist and limits options.

Under cockpit and cabin ECS I would like to see more detail. I would like a specification of effectiveness of AC.

I would like to see ADS-B in specified as a requirement.
Why do we specify TACAN? Is having that equipment that different than VOR/DME to justify cost and weight.
Jeppesen. They provide aeronautical data and are in a completely different business than Garmin. And anyway, the DOD gets all its aeronautical data from the NGA. That they confuse these 2 things has me boggled.

I would like a specification of a moving map. I hope it is included in some of the other bullet points but I know NAVAIR.

The performance bullet leaves a lot to be desired. Endurance is tied to crew weight. And I seeing as many current events are specified at 2.0 hours. I just don't think a 2.0 hour endurance cuts it. 2.5 at a bare minimum.
Why the cruise speed requirement? We dealt with a 100 kt helo for years. are we going to save that much time and increase the value of training with that speed?

Just some random thoughts....
 

Gatordev

Well-Known Member
pilot
Site Admin
Contributor
I wonder if "tail rotor" is truly as limiting as you're saying. They may just mean "Not NOTAR or Powered Flight." Operationally, the Fenestrom handles and feels like a conventional tail rotor.

I'm still baffled why no one seems to acknowledge ADS-B In, let alone make it a requirement, especially in a training aircraft that isn't allowed to use its LTE iPad.
 

IKE

Nerd Whirler
pilot
My takeaways:
A tail rotor. That's an odd requirement. I understand no NOTAR system, but I don't see a problem with a Fenstrom like the Dolphin.

Just some random thoughts....
I would argue a fenestron is a type of tail rotor. You know, because it's a rotor on the tail.

I'm sure this requirement is so they can teach studs all about anti-torque, TR emergencies, etc., since we'll be flying single main rotor helos for the foreseeable future in the fleet.

NOTARs are weird, really weird, and in my personal opinion, not worth it. It's like driving a car with a one really neat feature (say a CVT), but that isn't fast, doesn't corner well, and has weird driving characteristics -- it's interesting and unique but not truly valuable.
 

Pags

Well-Known Member
pilot

Pags

Well-Known Member
pilot
None, agree.

But the acquisition gods are aligning for Leonardo. That will help.
My point was that there are different acquisition gods at work for each program that have their own evaluation criteria at work for their source selections. Criteria that resulted in Leonardo being selected for USAF may play differently at USN. We'll have to wait and see...
 
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